Welcome to today’s business and media intelligence, as the latest figures confirm the positive impact of social distancing restrictions in Australia.

International news

  • Governments have implemented extraordinary measures to ensure the safety of their people and economies. However, The Financial Times believes some “strongman leaders” are exploiting the crisis to strengthen their grip on power. Read the article here.
  • Companies in the US, including Amazon and General Motors Co, are exploring ways to undertake mass testing of its employees before they return to work in order to keep exposure to sick people to a minimum and boost employee confidence. Read the Wall St Journal article here. (Subscriber access)
  • Mark Carney, the former governor of the Bank of England, writes on the notion of value for The Economist: “The traditional drivers of value have been shaken, new ones will gain prominence, and there’s a possibility that the gulf between what markets value and what people value will close.” Read the article here.
  • If you are missing your city lunch time hotspot, the Financial Times shows you how to make the perfect grilled cheese sandwich. Watch it here. (Subscriber access)

Australian company news 

  • Virgin Australia’s collapse highlights risks of operating with high debt
    • Virgin updated the market this morning noting it has “entered voluntary administration to recapitalise the business and help ensure it emerges in a stronger financial position on the other side of the COVID-19 crisis.” Read the ASX statement here and lessons from Virgin’s collapse, including the risks of operating with high debt, in The AFR here. (Subscriber access)
  • Nine and News Corp join forces against Big Tech
    • The AFR writes on how the decision to cancel the year-long industry negotiations between Australian media organisations and the digital giants “demonstrates the effectiveness of media companies as political lobbyists”. It also highlights how COVID 19 has seriously impacted revenue for commercial media. Read here. (Subscriber access)

Australian markets 

  • ASIC keeping an eye on superannuation advertising
    • The Treasurer has asked ASIC to closely monitor advertising by the superannuation funds to ensure members can make balanced decisions on whether to access their superannuation early. Read the AFR article here. (Subscriber access)
  • Pay and hours reductions require staff consent
    • As many companies conserve cash by asking their employees to reduce hours and pay, lawyers are warning CEOs that they need to obtain agreement from staff in order to slash wages. Read the AFR article here. (Subscriber access)

Our daily briefing is not meant to be a summary of media coverage but rather, insights that may be helpful in understanding how organisations are communicating with stakeholders in a time of crisis – and what comes next. Sign up via email